Regular Alchemy Press editor Jan Edwards’ collection, Fables and Fabrications, has received a rather splendid review by Andrew Darlington. He describes the book thus:
You’ll be drawn to this book – in her words, like a hungry she-bear scenting tethered sheep. Announced as ‘fourteen tales of mystery, mirth and the macabre’ this is not the grind-core slasher-horror of gut-wrenching torture-porn, more the luring strangeness of some lost golden age.
Back in 2014 The Alchemy Press published Bryn’s first collection, Merry-Go-Round and Other Words. Now, four years on, we have his second book — full of equally stunning stories and poems.
In Compromising the Truth we have eighteen stories plus two dozen poems of the weird and wonderful: a touch of science fiction, a tidbit of horror, a sprinkling of the strange.
From Adrian Cole’s introduction:
“His stories reflect a clear understanding of the human condition and he imbues his characters with knowing insights. The tales vary from stark, unnerving urban horror, to blackly humorous, almost preposterous fantasy, although even these hugely entertaining yarns are seated in reality. “
There was an avalanche of stories submitted to The Alchemy Press Book of Horrors – especially in the final month of the submission’s window. To be honest, we didn’t expect to receive around 310 manuscripts seeking a home in this anthology. We were worried that we’d have too few submissions.
We read the stories as soon as possible after receiving them (but as indicated, January was a particularly busy month), maintaining a database of comments in order to narrow down to a shortlist.
Yet we managed it quickly – and then the shortlist itself needed to be pruned, and even so we couldn’t cut back to the original idea: an anthology containing a dozen stories. So we succumbed and settled on 25 stories. Without further ado, in alphabetical order (alphabetically by first name that is!), here’s what you’ll be reading in the latter part of 2018.
Adrian Cole: Broken Billy
Cate Gardner: The Fullness of Her Belly
Debbie Bennett: The Fairest of them all
Gail-Nina Anderson: An Eye for a Plastic Eye
Gary McMahon: Guising
James Brogden: The Trade-Up
Jenny Barber: Down Along the Backroads
John Grant: Too Late
Keris McDonald: Remember, Remember
Madhvi Ramani: Teufelsberg
Marie O’Regan: Pretty Things
Marion Pitman: The Apple Tree
Mike Chinn: Her Favourite Place
Peter Sutton: Masks
Phil Sloman: The Girl with Three Eyes
Ralph Robert Moore: Peelers
Ramsey Campbell: Some Kind of a Laugh
Ray Cluley: Bluey
Samantha Lee: The Worm
Stan Nicholls: Deadline
Stephen Laws: Get Worse Soon
Storm Constantine: La Tenebreuse
Suzanne Barbieri: In the Rough
Tina Rath: Little People
Tony Richards: The Garbage Men
In addition, the book will be garnished with a range of Jim Pitt illustrations. We aim to make this book one you’ll treasure.
The submission window for The Alchemy Press Book of Horrors is now closed. We have received 297 submissions to wade through (sorry, to read), make shortlists, and then finalised the table of contents. We hope to start contacting folk in a few weeks. Please be patient.
2018 sees the re-launch of the Alchemy Press Book Of… anthologies with a brand new title: HORRORS, edited by Peter Coleborn and Jan Edwards. We are looking for horror stories … but tales that can be described as “weird”, “strange”, “amazing” and “peculiar”: stories that would have found a home in Weird Tales, Unknown Worlds, Fantastic and Fantasy Tales among other illustrious publications.
Greetings Gate, let’s Agitate. Look over your shoulder. Do you see the camera? Then dig that even as you read these words of sedition and denial you are being watched by the ever e-quisitive National Protection Agency. The National Protection Agency – omnipresent, omniscient and most ominous – which runs PanOptika, the spider at the centre of the Web.
PanOptika. What’s the slogan: watching out for the good guys by watching out for the bad guys. But what did that Roman word-slinger, Juvenal say? Quis custodiet ipsos custodes: who watches the watchers?
So dig this to the extremity, cats and kittens: if we do nothing soon we must kneel, digitally-dutiful, before National Protection, and then there will be no chance to zig when the ChumBots say zag, or to beep when they say bop. Realise thou that PanOptika triumphant means we will not be able to think, to act, to speak or to move without the spirit-sapping realisation that the badniks know everything … everything.
* We are circling the drain. This is my warning. *